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Saturday, June 30, 2012


Muslims believe that God is singularly, non-corporeally One, without partners, “persons” in a godhead or physical offspring. In chapter 112, verses 2-5 in the Holy Quran, we read the quintessential definition of God:

“Proclaim: ‘He is Allah, the only One; Allah, the Independent and Besought of all. He begets not, nor is He begotten; And there is none like Him.”

These four sentences present the true eminence and nature of God; they extol His majesty and supremacy as the sole Creator and Lord over mankind and all creation. These four sentences counter all forms of theology, paganism or idolatry that impute to God any human frailties or worldly limitations.

The Quran teaches that God is free from all defects, with unlimited knowledge and powers. He encompasses everything and nothing encompasses Him. God is the First and the Last, the ever-Living, the Omnipresent, impervious to death. He suffers no decay, nor does he tire. His attributes are eternal, His powers ever intact and undiminished. God is the Master of the Day of Judgment, and on Judgment Day, God has all power to be supremely Merciful, with all power to forgive sins without requiring any payment in the form of the death of anyone, least of all his own physical son.

God also tells us in the Quran in 2:187 that He hears the prayers of His supplicants and helps them in distress. When we are humble and weak and turn to Him, He turns to us with His Love, Mercy and Compassion. God reassures us, saying, “When My servants ask thee about Me, tell them: ‘I am near. I answer the prayer of the supplicant when he prays to Me.’ So they should hearken to Me and believe in Me, that they may follow the right way.”

And while God is compassionate, He is also Just. Unrepentant wrongdoers will not escape God’s Justice, but once they do repent, His Mercy will prevail. In 7:157 God says, “I will inflict My punishment on whom I will; but My mercy encompasses all things; so I will ordain it for those who act righteously…” For those who read “on whom I will” as capricious, remember: God’s Will is always Just.

God tells us in the Holy Quran in 51:57 that He created mankind to worship Him in complete humility and submission. When we do this, we can begin to manifest the qualities or Attributes of God, thus fulfilling the purpose of our creation, which is to become godly. And when God becomes the central focus of all our thoughts and actions, our godliness and righteousness will arise as a natural result.

Islam teaches us the most complete and fulfilling way to worship and serve God. He is my God, your God, and the God of everyone. He desires for us the good of this life and the good of the life to come. For all who wish to be godly, we must first turn to God and worship Him alone. This is what will deliver us from the Hell of this life and the next.

[Ghosted; original draft by Jameel Mohamed for Imam Shamshad's “From the Pulpit” Daily Bulletin religion section. Ran in May19th print edition and at this link: ]

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